| Minesweeper

Imagine the scenario: you've finished the Dettlaff account at work and have 15 minutes to kill before the end of the day. The boss has gone home early and his deputy is eyeing up his watch before he's allowed to pull on his Flintstones-style klaxon to signal the end of the day.

What do you do? Well, what any self-respecting human does, of course – you pretend to look busy and fiddle about on Minesweeper for what's left of the day.

But fast-forward half an hour. You're on the tube coming home and there's an irk itching away in the back of your head. Could you have beaten your time had your suck-up colleague not asked you to find an obscure email from six months ago? So what do you do then? You whip out your mobile and have another crack.

Minesweeper is that easy. The core gameplay has been carried over from the Windows version you're used to, so boot up the mobile one and you're playing within seconds.

If you're unaware of how the Minesweeper mechanics work, then all you need to know is it's based on simple logic. You're presented with a blank grid and have to remove the squares, being careful not to unveil a cheeky mine hiding underneath. Quite merciless in its approach, uncovering a Diana's Dynamite results in Game Over.

To assist you, you're given hints in the way of proximity numbers if you uncover a blank tile, telling you how many mines might be in and around your current position. You also get ten flags to cover suspicious squares; cover all the mines and you win.

Unfortunately, this simplicity is the downfall of Minesweeper. Developer Teazel has managed to import over the core gameplay well enough, but has given the game a lick of paint that could only please Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen.

For some reason the grid has been zoomed as close to the screen as possible, meaning it can be hard to gauge where to make your next move. Some squares vary in colour to give a watery effect but it's unnecessary. The music is worse – it drills into your head like a creepy nursery rhyme and we can guarantee you'll have more fun playing it on mute.

Also, offering only the Minesweeper experience with four difficulty modes (easy through to fiendish) means there really is no need to go back and replay Minesweeper other than to beat your fastest time. And if you find yourself doing that in your spare hours, then there really must be something wrong with your social life.

Keeping in mind that Absolute Minesweeper had bonus items and better presentation while Minesweeper Mobile at least tried to update the formula, then it's hard to recommend this version over some of the other mobile attempts. What it does offer is good, quick Minesweeper fun for when you're stuck behind David Cameron's bike in a traffic jam or are clawing at your face now cigarette breaks have been banned at work, but there are considerably better mobile experiences out there.


Well, it's Minesweeper! A fun distraction and nothing more, with no attempt made to enhance what has become an over-familiar affair